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Green River in Illinois

A self-supported trip created by guest-paddler

Trip Overview

Well it started off as sort a late day decision. Sunday turned out to be a wonderful bright and warm day. So I decided that it was time for the first paddle of the season. Went out to scout the put-in and take-out locations. Wasn't sure of how they would be after the recent floods we have had. Found both locations in good shape so decided to go for it.

Went home, loaded up the kayak and gear, and got a hold of a friend to help me drop off my truck at the take-out. I put in near the Geneseo country club, just as you go over the I&M canal. There is a nice gravel drive to get near the bridge, and it is an easy climb to get down the river bank to the waters edge. (Mostly sandy bank not to muddy.)

River flow is not to fast. Just floated most of the way to the IL rt 82 bridge. Took about a half an hour to get there. There is a small stream that flows in to the river on the right hand side (facing down stream). The current in it is a little faster and it shallows up a little not to far in but it is possible to paddle up it. You will find some big carp in this stream (have to bring the fishing pole along next time. Would probably be best to fish from the bank, I think some of these fish could really take you for a ride if trying to fish from the kayak.)

From there as you continue downstream spotted some wood ducks, a couple geese, and a Hawk. About half way between the rt. 82 bridge and the bridge on 1200 N (a country rd running north and south between rt. 6 and wolf rd.) there is a place where the Geneseo creek runs into the river. Paddled up this stream till I could go no farther. (You run into a spillway.) Met a couple of young boys playing on a tree that bridges across the creek. They seemed pretty surprised to see someone coming upstream in a kayak.

Enjoyed a quick chat and was back on my way down stream and out to the river. From there it was a quick paddle to the take-out. There is a slightly submerged log on the right hand side at the take-out. Had to bump over it to get to the bank. The whole trip took about 2 hour but that was with a lot of just floating and enjoying the weather and the water. It is a nice relaxing paddle.

This trip can be extended clear to the Rock River. I have paddled other sections but as of yet, have not taken the river from Geneseo out to the rock river in Colona.


There are restrooms by the I&M canal near the put-in area.


Go out Chicago St heading north. You will cross over the I&M canal and then find a small turn off on the left just past a power sub-station. Just after you cross the Green river bridge.

Take-out was at the bridge on 1200 North. (The second bridge you come to.)

Trip Details

  • Trip Duration: Day Trip
  • Sport/Activity: Kayaking, Canoeing
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)

Trip Location